Human resource is a competitive field, and you need a lot of expertise and knowledge to answer HR business partner behavioral interview questions.
HR business partner interview is crucial for hiring HR professionals that can help an organization improve its operations. During an interview, organizations screen the ideal candidate for the HR business partner role.
Behavioral questions help assess how well the candidate handled a particular situation in the past. Such questions also enable employers to evaluate how well a candidate will fit into the organization's culture and whether he or she has the necessary skills and experience to do the job.
To increase your chances of getting an HR business partner position in an organization, job seekers need to be well-equipped with all the behavioral questions employers might ask them.
Every industry is unique, and the questions an employer might ask you during an interview can vary accordingly. However, employers ask some common behavioral questions in almost every interview.
This guide will give you an overview of the most common HR business partner interview questions and how to answer them. So, let's dive in.
List of HR Business Partner Behavioral Interview Questions: Human Resource Management
Human resources management is a primary responsibility of any HR business partner. Organizations expect their HR business partner to have a great understanding of HRM, strategic planning, and HR functions. Following are some of the most common questions asked in an interview for a position in HR management:
Tell me about a time when you have had to deal with a problematic employee issue?
HR business partners often have to deal with employee issues, such as performance management, employee relations issues, disciplinary actions, and terminations. Having employee issues in an organization is not uncommon.
The interviewer wants to know how you handle difficult situations. Do you take a reactive or proactive approach? Your answer to this question will help the interviewer gauge how well you can handle difficult situations as an HRBP.
You can answer this question with an example of a problematic employee issue that you had to deal with in the past. Make sure that the situation you recall is relevant to the role of the HR business partner. Explain how you approached the root cause of the problem and what actions you took to resolve the issue. While answering this question, mention the outcomes of your decision.
Share the biggest challenge you have faced while working with leadership?
Working with leadership can be a challenge for any HR professional. Dealing with someone authoritative and demanding can be difficult. Convincing senior managers is a daunting task as they are usually set in their ways.
As an HRBP, you must be strategic when working with leadership. You also need to build trust and credibility with company leaders. The answer to this question shows your dealing with senior management in an organization.
The hiring manager wants to know if you have had any challenges working with leadership in the past and how you handled them. Whether you tried to persuade them by using data and facts or give in to their demands? How do you deal with resistance from leadership?
When answering this question, be sure to pick a situation that is relevant to the role of the HR business partner. Share how you approached the situation and what actions you took. Explain how you handle difficult conversations with leadership and what strategies you use to get them on board with your ideas.
Have you even introduced an innovative solution in any organization?
HR business partners often have to develop innovative solutions to improve the workforce. They need to be able to identify areas where change is needed and then create a plan of action to address the issue.
HR business partners need to be creative and have the ability to think outside the box. Introducing new ideas and solutions can make an organization more productive and efficient.
The interviewer wants to know about your dealing with change to achieve business objectives. When answering this question, share an example of an innovative solution you introduced in a previous organization. Explain how the solution improved the workforce and what benefits it brought to the organization. Be sure to highlight your role in the successful implementation of the solution.
Have you ever used HR management software to manage employee data?
HR management software can make the process of managing employee data much more accessible. HR department leaders can use such software to track employee performance, attendance, and payroll data.
To excel in your HR career, HR business partners need to stay up to date with the latest tools and technology. They need to be proficient in using HR software. They can use software to manage employee data and records. They can also use them to track employee performance and compliance.
As an HRBP, you will be responsible for managing employee data. You will need to be able to use HR software to track employee performance and compliance. Before your interview, learn about popular HR management software and tools, like Sapling, Sage HRMS, and Workday.
To effectively manage the workforce, organizations want to hire someone who is comfortable using popular HR management software. When answering this question, share your experience using HR management software. Explain how you use the software to manage employee data. Describe the benefits of using HR management software and how it has helped you in your role.
Talk about a time when you had to deal with a dispute among your team members?
Disputes among team members can be disruptive and damaging to business operations. An HR business partner is responsible for resolving disputes among team members. For this purpose, they need a deeper insight into human behavior and team dynamics.
HR business partners need to address disputes that may arise to make teamwork effective. They create HR agenda that prevents conflicts among team members and helps everyone stay up to date on the new hr policy.
When answering this question, share a time when you resolve a perplexing dispute among team members. Explain how you did it and what methods you used to get the team members to cooperate. Highlight your skills in conflict resolution and how they benefited the organization.
Have you ever had to struggle to implement HR policy in an organization?
A key role of HR business partners is to help implement policies in an organization. It can be a difficult task, as policy can often be met with resistance from employees.
As an HRBP, you will likely face resistance when trying to implement policy. This question allows employers to assess your ability to handle resistance and how you deal with it.
While sharing your experience, explain how you were able to overcome the resistance and implement the policy. Highlight the business strategy you used to get employees on board with the policy. Emphasize your skills in change management and how they benefited the organization.
This question allows employers to assess your experience and expertise in policy implementation. It also allows them to understand how you deal with resistance from employees.
List of HR Business Partner Behavioral Interview Questions: Human Resource Analytics
Here are some of the most common behavioral questions related to HR analytics that will help you prepare for your upcoming interview.
How much do you worth HR metrics while making a decision for an organization?
HR metrics are essential when making decisions for an organization. They provide essential data that the HR team needs to improve the workforce. As an HR business partner, you need to be familiar with the most important business metrics.
This question allows interviewers to assess your business acumen and analytical approach to problem-solving. To land an HRBP job, you must know various HR metrics, like employee turnover rate, attrition rate, and time to fill a position. Understanding them enables an HR business partner to assess whether a particular decision will positively or negatively impact the workforce.
Give an example of when you utilized HR analytics in your previous role?
HR analytics is a powerful tool that professionals can use to make informed decisions about the workforce. To get an HRBP job, you need to be familiar with HR analytics and know how to use it to your advantage.
When answering this question, share an example of the usage of HR analytics in your previous role. Explain how you used the data to make a decision that benefited the organization. Share your experience and expertise in HR analytics to show the interviewer that you can utilize it effectively.
This question allows employers to understand your experience and expertise in HR analytics. It also allows them to assess your ability to use data to make informed decisions about the workforce.
List of HR Business Partner Behavioral Interview Questions: Cross-Functional Teamwork
An HRBP is responsible for working with other departments in the organization. Organizations want to ensure that the professionals they hire can work with other departments. Following are some common behavioral questions related to cross-functional teamwork that you can expect in your interview.
How do you coordinate and collaborate with other departments in the organization?
As an HR business partner, you need to be able to coordinate and collaborate with other departments in the organization. Teamwork among various departments of an organization is essential for success. Collaboration among multiple departments allows the sharing of resources and the pooling of knowledge.
The answer to this question will give the employers insight into the ability of candidates to work with other departments. It will also help assess the teamwork skills of candidates.
While answering this question, explain the team-building methods you used for promoting coordination among various departments and how they benefited the organization. Highlight your interpersonal skills to show the interviewer that you can collaborate with other departments. You can also share an example of a time when you successfully collaborated with another department in the organization.
List of HR Business Partner Behavioral Interview Questions Related to Communication
Following are some common behavioral questions related to communication that you can expect in your interview.
Talk about a time when you have to promote communication in an organization?
Promoting communication in an organization is essential for success. Better communication allows better sharing of information and the resolution of conflicts. It is also necessary for the smooth functioning of an organization.
As an HR business partner, you may have to promote communication in the organization. This question allows employers to assess how they communicate disputed information to employees and mediate conflicts.
When answering this question, share an example of when you promoted communication within the organization. Explain how you accomplished it and what the results were. Highlight your communication skills as a critical factor in promoting communication within the organization.
Describe a time when you had to provide critical feedback?
Honest and constructive feedback is the key to helping employees improve their performance. As an HR professional, you often need to give critical feedback to employees. Professionals provide this type of feedback to improve the performance of employees.
HR business partners need to be competent enough to provide honest, objective, and helpful feedback. Giving critical feedback can be difficult, but it is vital for an HRBP job. The interviewer wants to know if you shy away from it or if you are comfortable giving it.
Share a time when you had to give critical feedback to an employee. Explain how you approached the situation and how you delivered the feedback. Elaborate your communication skills to ensure that the feedback was well-received by the employee.
This question allows employers to understand how you handle difficult conversations with employees. It also enables them to grasp whether you are capable of providing feedback that is helpful and objective or not.
If you are new to Human Resources and are looking to break into an HR role, we recommend taking our HR Certification Courses, where you will learn how to build your skillset in human resources, build your human resources network, craft an excellent HR resume, and create a successful job search strategy.
Josh Fechter is the founder of HR.University. He’s a certified HR professional and has managed global teams across 5 different continents including their benefits and payroll. You can connect with him on LinkedIn here.